SUNY Downstate President Wayne J. Riley, M.D. Appointed to Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC)

By Office of Communications & Marketing | May 21, 2020

MEDIA CONTACT: John Gillespie | | (314) 708-9090

Wayne J. Riley, M.D.Brooklyn, N.Y. (May 21, 2020) - SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University President Wayne J, Riley, M.D., MPH, MBA, MACP, has been appointed by the United States Comptroller General Gene L. Dodaro to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC). The announcement was made today by the U.S. General Accountability Office. Dr. Riley was appointed to a three-year term that runs through April of 2023.

MedPAC is a nonpartisan Congressional agency established in 1997 that provides the U.S. Congress with analysis and policy advice on the Medicare program. MedPAC advises Congress on payments to providers in Medicare’s traditional fee-for-service programs and to health plans participating in the Medicare Advantage program. MedPAC is also tasked with analyzing access to care, quality of care, and other issues affecting Medicare. The Comptroller General is responsible for naming new commission members

“MedPAC has proven to be an invaluable resource on Medicare issues, providing Congress with key insights and advice,” Dodaro said in a press release announcing the appointments. “We had a number of highly-skilled applicants who were nominated this year, and it gives me great pleasure to announce this latest round of appointments.”

Because we serve an aging and economically disadvantaged population, more than 80 percent of the reimbursement we receive for healthcare services comes from Medicare and other government programs,” said Wayne J. Riley, M.D. President of SUNY Downstate. “It is a great honor to have been appointed to the MedPAC Commission and to represent our unique perspective as the Commission advises Congress on both the Medicare program and U.S. healthcare policy, which is particularly important as we look towards recovery from COVID-19.”

Dr. Riley was appointed the 17th President of SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University in 2017 and holds faculty appointments as a Professor of Medicine and of Health Policy and Management. Dr. Riley earned his Doctor of Medicine degree from the Morehouse School of Medicine. He also holds a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology with a concentration in Medical Anthropology from Yale University, a Master of Public Health degree in health systems management from the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, and a Master’s in Business Administration from Rice University’s Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business.

Immediately prior to joining Downstate, Dr. Riley served as clinical professor of medicine and adjunct professor of healthcare management and health policy at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. He was the 10th president and chief executive officer at Meharry Medical College. He began his career at Baylor College of Medicine, where he completed residency training in internal medicine and rose to vice president and vice dean for Health Affairs and Governmental Relations.

Dr. Riley is an elected member of the prestigious National Academy of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences where he served as Vice Chair and Chair of the NAM Section the Administration of Health Services, Education and Research. He is also President Emeritus of the American College of Physicians.


About SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University

SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University is the borough’s only academic medical center for health education, research, and patient care, and is a 342-bed facility serving the healthcare needs of New York City, and Brooklyn’s 2.6 million residents. University Hospital of Brooklyn (UHB) is Downstate’s teaching hospital, backed by the expertise of an outstanding medical school and the research facilities of a world-class academic center. More than 800 physicians, representing 53 specialties and subspecialties—many of them ranked as tops in their fields—comprise Downstate's staff.

A regional center for cardiac care, neonatal and high-risk infant services, pediatric dialysis, and transplantation, Downstate also houses a major learning center for children with physical ailments or neurological disorders. In addition to UHB, Downstate comprises a College of Medicine, College of Nursing, School of Health Professions, a School of Graduate Studies, a School of Public Health, and a multifaceted biotechnology initiative, including the Downstate Biotechnology Incubator and BioBAT for early-stage and more mature companies, respectively. For more information, visit or follow us on Twitter at @sunydownstate.